Being in a professional organization can lend a real boost to your career, Executive Vice President and Chief Executive Officer Robert Ivy of the American Institute of Architects says. It gives professionals a way to network, become more educated, gain access to resources, get professional recognitions, and really help to find out about new job opportunities.
He says that today there are over 92,000 professional and trade organizations in the United States alone. Robert Ivy says that most of these are a fantastic source of education that has been specifically tailored to meet the needs of these organization’s members. People who are just starting out can really benefit from this information as can more experienced people who don’t want to reinvent the wheel. Some of these organizations even do original research and then release it on the website or in a newsletter. See Related Article at archinect.com
Professional organizations are a great way to build connections with others in your profession or related fields of work. A very good way of doing this is by attending an annual conference where anywhere from hundreds of people to thousands congregate and meet one another. At these events, you can attend workshops and you can strike up friendships during get-togethers like a happy hour.
If you are a member of a professional organization that opens you up to collecting credentials, Robert Ivy says. You can also show that you take your profession very seriously when you are a member of this type of organization. Some, like the AIA, also have a code of ethics which gives both clients and hiring managers peace of mind that you will act professionally when doing work for them.
He says that the annual dues to join one of these organizations go from around $50 a year up to $1000. Some of these organizations also offer different levels of memberships with different associated costs. The AIA charges more for members who are in a place like Los Angeles or New York City while they don’t charge as much in a less active location such as in Nebraska.
Before taking charge of the AIA, Robert Ivy had been an architect and an author and editor-in-chief. He managed Architectural Record which is now considered to be the authority when it comes to architecture and great design. Earlier in his career, he worked as an architect at Dean/Dale, Dean & Ivy where he was a founding principal.